The new year is usually a time of reflecting and setting goals for the upcoming year. Instead of making resolutions that might have an unpleasant process, I’m deciding to focus on something fun and positive for the upcoming year: to foster creativity.
Practicing creativity can be intimindating, but it shouldn’t be. Most people do creative things everyday and don’t even realize it. Being creative should be fun and invigorating…you should say to yourself when you’re finished, “I did that?! That’s awesome!”
If you’re considering integrating creativity into your life, but aren’t quite sure where to start, check out the suggestions below for some inspiration.
1. Knit a Scarf
Knitting is a great stress reliever and you will end up with a product that you can use or wear. Making a scarf is one of the more simpler knitting projects and is great for a beginner. And for those living in colder climates, a scarf is a necessity on brisk days. Spending your time knitting is a great way to be creative and self-sustatining on these long, cold, winter days.Source: “How To Knit a Scarf” by Videojug
2. Take Pictures
Taking photographs is one of the easiest and most accessible ways to be creative. Whether you have a digital or traditional film camera you can create amazing images and moments. For me, it is difficult to balance enjoying a moment while simultaneously trying to take a picture, so to counteract this, I suggest blocking off a particular amount of time dedicated to just photography. You will be more focused and will pick out subjects, angles, etc. that you wouldn’t normally since you are paying particular attention to your surroundings.
3. Redesign a Room
Simple changes like rearranging furniture, adding new art or painting walls a new color can transform a room and will help you to tap into your creative self. Check out MyDeco.com to rearrange furniture virtually or see what a new paint color would look like. It’s a great test drive before taking the leap.
4. Cook Something New
If you don’t usually cook at home, you should give it a try. There are many easy recipes out there and you can be creative with what you choose to be the ingredients. If you are already a home cook, try a cuisine that you aren’t too familiar with or re-create a go-to recipe by adding something extra or by playing around with measurements (note: do not change baking measurements since they need to be precise). I love using TasteSpotting for new ideas.
Source: Steamy Kitchen
5. Learn to Cross Stitch
Cross stichting is one of those age old traditions that I learned from my mom. I think sometimes it is overlooked due to the lack of fun and modern patterns. It’s actually very easy to learn. Read Mochimochi Land’s tutorial for the basics. Instead of going out and buying a pattern book, you can create great patterns from your own home. PatternsforYou has a great program that will transform an uploaded image into a pattern. And what’s even cooler is it includes a list of suggested thread colors that correspond with the pattern! This is a great way to make cross stitch contemporary and fun.
6. Take a Printmaking Class
There are many types of printmaking, from screen printing to lithography. Since equipment for printmaking is large and expensive, taking a class is a great way to access this art form. You can search local art schools and centers for available classes. After you learn the fundamentals, most art centers have open studios where you can continue to practice your chosen printmaking technique. Bonus: the prints you make in class can be displayed in your home (see #3).
7. Make Your Own Jewelry
During my childhood summers, I spent my time making beaded necklaces and friendship bracelets. For a grown-up version you can swap out plastic beads for pearls and thread for gleaming chains. Look for inspiration on the street or in magazines. Take your ideas and be creative with the materials – found objects, bobby pins, lace and buttons are all great materials to use.
8. Paint Abstractly
Painting is at its core a creative endeavor. If you’ve never painted before, don’t fret; there’s no need to be the next Michelangelo. Anyone can put paint on a paintbrush and spread it over a canvas. Be abstract and don’t try to imitate life. That way you won’t get frustrated and it will be much more fun. Experiment with different mediums – oil paints, acrylics, duct tape, spray paint, and sequins. The choice is yours!
9. Grow a Victory Garden
Producing your own fruits and vegetables is very rewarding. This year, plant some unique vegetable and fruits in a garden. You can be creative with the layout, and when your plants are harvested, you can be creative in the kitchen by utilizing the unfamiliar vegetables and fruits in your cooking (see #4). If you don’t have an outdoor space to plant a garden, grow some unique herbs in your kitchen. This will bring color inside and give you new flavors to work with when cooking. See our previous post on ideas for gardening in the winter.
10. Make a Collage of 2012
Collages are a great way to collect and materialize memories. This year, try and collect objects and pictures that were important to you and create a collage or scrapbook that represents you and the events that happened. Mix materials and objects for an interesting look. Try and set aside time, maybe one page a month, to dedicate to the project. Next year, you will have a great way to revisit happy times and memories.